Higher Education Quick Takes

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Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

Jane Sanders resigned Monday as president of Burlington College, citing unspecified differences with the college's board, The Burlington Free Press reported. Speculation about her departure has been rampant since the disclosure of a board agenda with an item labeled "removal of the president."

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, John Anderson of Rice University explains what the sediment below the ice of Antarctica reveals about the continent’s past and the planet’s future. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

Almost half of undergraduate programs at public colleges and universities in Texas are in danger of being eliminated because they do not meet a new state requirement of graduating at least 25 students every five years, UPI reported. Many physics programs nationally do not graduate large numbers of undergraduates, but are considered vital nonetheless because of the role of the discipline in preparing students for a variety of science and engineering related fields, and because of the significance of research in physics. A delegation from the American Physical Society recently met with officials of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to discuss concerns about enforcing the rule with regard to physics. Raymund Paredes, the Texas commissioner of higher education, said he would not back exceptions to the rule. "In this budgetary environment, we can't afford the luxury of programs not producing graduates," he told UPI. "It's up to academic departments faced with closure of programs to salvage them."

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

Spain on Monday opened its first and Europe's second university focused on the culinary arts, AFP reported. For its first year, 74 students were admitted to a four-year program, out of 380 who applied.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

Rhode Island's Board of Governors for Higher Education on Monday approved a policy allowing some students without legal documentation to live in the United States to pay in-state tuition rates at the state's public colleges and universities, the Associated Press reported. To be eligible under the new policy, students must have attended a high school in the state for at least three years and graduated, and must pledge to seek legal status as soon as they are eligible to do so.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 3:00am

Achieving the Dream today added 23 community colleges to its list of 52 "leader colleges." Colleges get the nod for improved graduation rates, closed achievement gaps and "changing lives," according to the nonprofit group, which works with 160 institutions on "evidence-based, student-centered" reforms in the community college sector. Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas was one of the colleges to earn the leader college distinction, due in part to bulked up remedial education coursework that increased the college's three-year graduation or certificate completion rate to 24 percent from 10 percent over a four-year period.

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Barbara Gold of Hamilton College reveals how Christians of the late Roman Empire created the modern concept of what it means to be a martyr. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 3:00am

Gallaudet University, which at various points in recent years has seen debates over whether it remains sufficiently committed to deaf culture, is having another such discussion. The Washington Post reported that the current tensions relate to an increase in the last four years, from 33 percent to 44 percent, in the percentage of undergraduates who were educated in mainstream public schools rather than schools for the deaf. Some of these students grew up with cochlear implants. There are now 102 such students, double the number in 2005.

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 3:00am

Several hundred students at the University of Auckland occupied a floor of the business school there for several hours today, as student groups nationwide vowed to step up similar protests, over legislation headed toward passage in New Zealand's parliament. The legislation would end a requirement that all students at a university be members of that institution's student union, and leaders of the student unions say that the legislation is an attempt to reduce their power.

Monday, September 26, 2011 - 3:00am

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College faculty members went on strike Friday. The union, affiliated with the American Association of University Professors, says that the college's contract offer would use a switch in the college calender to inappropriately increase faculty workloads, and would do so in ways that would hinder the ability of professors to educate students. A spokesman for the college said that courses were being taught as scheduled. The college posted a statement on its website saying that that it had an obligation to reject union demands "to pay somebody more for significantly less work."

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